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Transnational Religion; Hindu and Muslim Movements

Author(s): Peter Van der Veer

Journal: Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies
ISSN 1583-0039

Volume: 3;
Issue: 7;
Start page: 4;
Date: 2004;
Original page

Keywords: nation-state | transnationalism | Hindu | Muslim | migrants | identity | orientalist imagination | tradition | globalisation | cosmopolitanism

This paper deals with transnational Hindu and Muslim movements. It rejects the common assertion that migrant communities are conservative in religious and social matters by arguing that ‘traditionalism’ requires considerable ideological creativity that transforms previous practices and discourses considerably. It suggests instead that religious movements, active among migrants, develop cosmopolitan projects that can be viewed as alternatives to the cosmopolitanism of the European Enlightenment. This raises a number of challenges concerning citizenship, integration and political loyalty for governmentality in the nation-states in which these cosmopolitan projects are carried out. The paper suggests that instead of looking at religious migrants as at best conservative and at worst terrorist one should perhaps pay some attention to the creative moments in human responses to new challenges and new environments.
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